Aleshin Out, Saavedra In for Schmidt in Toronto

Sebastian Saavedra (right) will race for Schmidt Peterson Motorsport in Toronto - Credit: Chris Jones / IndyCar

Mikhail Aleshin will not race this weekend for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports around the streets of Toronto, with his place in the team going to Sebastian Saavedra.

No reason has been given for the move, which comes as a surprise, particularly as Aleshin will be present in Toronto to support the team.

Saavedra’s only appearance this season so far has been in an AFS Racing-backed Juncos Racing entry in the Indianapolis 500, but he has 61 Verizon IndyCar Series race starts under his belt, although his best finish so far was an eighth place in Baltimore back in 2013.

The twenty-seven-year-old Colombian will reunite with his former race engineer from Indy Lights, Blair Perschbacher, with whom he won multiple races, including in Toronto back in 2009, while AFS Racing will once again back Saavedra.

“We welcome the opportunity to compete with Ric and Sam [Schmidt] at a venue where Seb and I have had great success in the past,” said AFS Racing owner Gary Peterson.

Saavedra will partner Canadian home hero James Hinchcliffe this weekend, with the team looking to secure their second victory of the year after Hinchcliffe triumphed around the streets of Long Beach back in April.